Faculty Advisor

Gibson, Daniel G


Sex differences in the brain may influence the incidence rates of autism. Using two different strains of mice, one social (Black 6) and one asocial (BTBR), it is possible to compare the expression of different genes in certain areas of the brain suspected to be effected by autism. Using real-time PCR the target gene Neuroligin 3 (Nlgn3) showed a statistical difference in expression between the two strains. In addition, we are generating a mouse model which has four genotypes (Male (XY-SRY), Male (XX-SRY), Female (XX), Female (XY-)). Using this model, a sexually dimorphic phenotype can be analyzed between different hormonal conditions (testosterone versus estrogens) and between different sex chromosomal complements (XX versus XY).


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

April 2008


Biology and Biotechnology

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Biology and Biotechnology

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